1. The three-headed monster: The Jazz have a three pronged attack in Mehmet Okur, Andrei Kirilenko, and Carlos Boozer. AK-47 is starting off slow, but only a fool would think that his 9.3 points per game average is not going to rise along with his 7.8 rebounds, 2.25 blocks, and one steal worth of nightly stat line. Carlos Boozer is also giving opposing teams fits. Boozer is leading the team in scoring at a mark of 20.5 points a game and has been a force on the boards snatching 14 rebounds a night. And to no surprise to me, mainly because I picked him as the division’s most underrated player, are the numbers that Okur is posting nightly. Mehmet is right on course to average 20 and 10 this season and his current stat line is reading 18.5 points and 9.5 rebounds a game.
2. Deron Williams: The Utah Jazz have to be excited about the production of the second year point guard. Deron is no joke and has a 3.0 assist to turnover ratio. If the young guard can keep this type of play consistent he is going to fuel the Jazz all season long. Williams is no slouch putting the ball in the cup either. He is averaging 13 points a night thus far.
3. Points scored vs. points allowed: The Jazz are averaging 106 points a game, while only giving up 96 to the opposition. It doesn’t take a genius, or a doctor for that matter, to understand what this means. They have an undefeated record, (4-0), and that means they have won each of their four games up to this point by an average of ten points.
4. Depth: The Jazz currently have five players scoring in double figures and that number could jump to seven real quick. Carlos Boozer, Mehmet Okur, Deron Williams, Derek Fisher, and Matt Harpring round out the top five, but AK-47 and Gordon Giricek are both lurking with averages of 9.3 and 8.7 points per game respectively.
5. Jerry Sloan: The old fashioned Sloan is no rookie and brings 22 years of coaching experience to the table. His career win/loss record is an astounding 988-688 and he has 158 games worth of postseason experience to boot! Sloan is a no-nonsense kind of guy and is known for developing team chemistry with the best of em.
The Nuggets better get their act straight in a hurry because it is not looking like Utah is going to drop off anytime soon. I’m not jumping ship, and never will might I add, but I’ve got a feeling that a late season battle for the division championship is in the works and these early games could play a pivotal role.